Mine: Won't Share Toys
Toddlers often become upset when other children play with their toys. They see possession as ownership. They don't understand the concept of sharing until 3 or 4 years of age. But you can plant the idea with statements such as, "If you share with them, they'll share with you." Try this approach:
- First: If your child doesn't want to share her toys yet, don't punish or criticize her. When you go to the playground, only take one toy with you. When she's not playing with it, pick it up before another child takes an interest in it.
- Second: Buy some separate toys that are brought out when other children visit you. Make it clear that these "sharing toys" don't belong to your child.
- Third: If your child grabs someone's toy away from them, return the toy to the child who owns it. Never let the more forceful child keep a toy she has taken away. If this misbehavior recurs, give the grabber a brief time-out.
- Fourth: When you share your food or possessions with your child, point it out to her. And, don't forget to praise her for any sharing she does.
If you have questions about your child sharing toys, consult your healthcare provider.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Author and Senior Reviewer: Barton D. Schmitt, M.D. FAAP
Last Review: 6/1/2008
Last Revised: 6/1/2000
Copyright 1994-2008 Barton Schmitt, M.D. Parent Advice Messages.